Hailing from Australia, Sonny Fodera (facebook, twitter, soundcloud, myspace) is one of the rising stars of the Jacking House scene, and is making waves with his groovy, funkalicious, ultra-danceable tracks. In just a few short years he has done releases on labels such as Drop Music, Guesthouse, 4Kenzo, Candy Talk, Nervous Records, Salted and his own label Beatdown Music. His name has been popping up everywhere, so it was inevitable that 5 Mag and Sonny had a talk…
I’m curious to know what the House music scene in Australia is like. It looks like Jacking House has made quite a stamp over there.
There are a lot of amazing producers and artists coming out from the land down under, such as Jorge Watts, Random Soul, Will Jax, House Inspectors, Anyo and D-T3ch just to name a few. We are all pretty tight as not many people are doing it. There are some cool parties being held, the House scene is starting to come along. I am looking forward to heading back there in March.
How long have you been making tracks for? It seems as if your success came fairly quick, how do you think you were able to make yourself stand out above the rest in just a few short years?
Persistence and dedication! I have been playing bass and electric guitar since I was six years old, I think having a musical background has definitely helped. I started making Hip-Hop tracks at the age of 16 using Cool Edit and Fruity Loops. I have also studied Music Technology at SAE and the University of Adelaide.
Do you like being labeled as a Jacking House producer or do you feel that may sometimes limit your opportunities?
Not at all, If anyone asked me what kind of music I make I would say House. I make a variety of different House Music, from deep to tech to funky, it’s all House Music at the end of the day. I think people get caught up on sub-genres a bit too much.
The one thing I love about your music is the versatility in sounds. I’ve noticed lots of Disco influences in some of your work. What else influences and informs your music?
I love Disco! I also listen to a lot of Funk and ’90s Hip-Hop such as A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul and Pharcyde. I think Hip-Hop definitely has an influence in a lot of my tracks. I love cutting up acapellas and messing around with them on my tracks.
You’ve been doing a lot of traveling this past year both in the States and Europe. What are some of your observations about the different cities you’ve played at?
It has been crazy! I have not been home in nine months now! I left Australia at the start of March to do a few US/Canada shows then WMC, then off to Europe where I somehow ended up living in Ibiza and playing at a few different parties over there. While playing in Serbia, Russia, UK, Georgia and Belgium, I met some really cool peeps along the way and now find myself living in Birmingham in the UK. I am heading back to Australia in February, then back to the States for WMC to see what happens! The music scene is different everywhere you go. It has been amazing to share my music while getting to see the world.
Tell us what it was like having “Everybody Get on the Decks” featured in The Juan MacLean’s DJ-Kicks compilation, that’s quite an honor!
I couldn’t believe it! DJ-Kicks is a massive series, I am so glad to have a track on there, especially selected from Juan Maclean.
You work with Jorge Watts under the name The Subjekts, do you plan on doing more stuff together in the future?
For sure! Jorge and I have been working on tracks for years, doing jacking and tech stuff with releases on Sly City, Blockhead and Flapjack. The Subjekts is our live Techno alias, we play at major festivals in Australia such as Parklife, We Love Sounds, and Stereosonic doing sets with the MPC 2000xl a couple of laptops, synthesizers and midi controllers. We have releases on Matteo DiMarr’s label Mar186, and our own label called EXAM. I am definitely planning on releasing some of that harder sound on that label very soon.
What was your personal experience of WMC 2010 like? Will you be there this year? And what are your thoughts on the date changes?
WMC was cool. It was my first year, everyone was saying it wasn’t as good as the year before, but apparently it’s always like that. I really enjoyed it as I got to hang out with people such as Mark Farina, DJ Sneak, Hector Moralez, DJ Mes, Phil Weeks, DJ Heather – the list goes on!! The hotel we were staying in was crazy, full of the House community. It was an unreal experience. I have already booked my ticket for next year! I am doing a US/Canada tour around the same time.
Your career has been on the fast track with so many releases… I can only imagine 2011 will be even more fruitful. What do you have in store for us?
I have a release coming on Large Music in the next few months, and one on Alex Kenji’s label Hotfingers that’s more of a tech vibe. I also have a string of releases and remixes coming out on my new label, Beatdown Music.